Legalize Marijuana? Kill Two Birds with One Stoned?
” California voters will decide whether to legalize marijuana for adults. The proposition has strong backing from nurses unions and teachers unions, who hope that the revenue raised will stave off layoffs.” 9/16/10 http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2010/09/16/marijuana-use-arrests-up-kerlikowske_n_719989.html
You would expect nurses to be concerned about the health of the citizens of California, as you might expect teachers to be concerned about the health, well-being and ability to learn of the students of their state. But that’s not the case. Their concern is for the revenue, the money collected from the sales tax that would be levied to help with the growing debt and save their jobs. Gov. Schwarzenegger wasn’t concerned about the citizens’ health or the impact on his state’s workforce or inebriated drivers on California’s already burdensome highways. He wants the sales tax to pay down the state’s debt after irrational spending sprees, which continue today with the opening of the Taj Mahal of public schools bearing a price tag of $578 million!
“With an eye-popping price tag of $578 million, it will mark the inauguration of the nation’s most expensive public school ever.” 8/22/10 AP http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20100822/ap_on_re_us/us_taj_mahal_schools
That’s this year after California has been teetering on the edge of bankruptcy for years. That was while Californians were receiving IOUs from the state in lieu of their tax refunds!
There’s no concern over health, well-being, ability to support oneself, impact to workforce, state’s productivity, impact on children and families, DUI’s on the roads, medical costs or the example set for each new generation of children. It’s exclusively about money – more and more money. They say they hope to pay the state’s debt with it, but everyone knows they will keep spending without restraint and the drug money will not be enough. There will never be enough because politicians don’t exercise fiscal responsiblity. They like cookies and they’ve been handed the cookie jar.
Politicians are so addicted to unlimited spending of other people’s money, that they rack up an unsustainable debt and then look to some vice to pay for it. They’ve always tried to legalize gambling, tax it and use that to support their spending addiction. Now it’s marijuana. When that’s not enough, they will look for another vice to tax. Legalize prostitution and tax it? It’s been mentioned before but was sharply rejected. That was before the public became accustomed to seeing sex, nudity, profanity and porn on their living room televisions every day. Now, the public is much less sensitive to lewdness and it might be acceptable in the near future. How long before politicians advance to legalize cocaine? Not possible, you say? Look how far we’ve come already. Things once thought outrageous are commonplace today. Americans have been pre-conditioned to accepted the legalization of vices so the politicians can tax, tax, tax and tax some more. All to feed their spending addiction.
It is immoral to spend other people’s hard-earned money as if they can always come up with more. That money represents chunks of their lives. Hours, days, weeks, months, years they spent earning it. Segments of their health. Time away from their families. And it will NEVER BE ENOUGH!! Do the politicians appreciate what it cost the taxpayers to earn it? If politicians are that immoral, it should be no surprise that they would look to immoral behaviors to tax.
The solution is not to raise the funds on the backs of the population through sin taxes. Those behaviors are called sin and were made illegal for good reason. The behaviors are destructive to individuals, then to families, then to communities. and inevitably to states and nations.
One argument favoring drug legalization is that it will take away the profit from drug cartels and drug traffickers and put them out of business. Think this through. Drug cartels and traffickers are willing to murder for that money. Does anyone rationally believe they will simply settle down and let their income go, once drugs are legalized? Will this end the violence among violent people? Will these people become tame and civilized and law-abiding? No way. They will move into some other kind of trafficking, perhaps step up their human trafficking, which is far worse, to make up the lost “revenue”. You see, they are addicted to revenue just as much as the politicians. It’s a war for revenue between the politicians and the cartels. We MUST close the borders, stop the trafficking across the border, hunt down, lock up and prosecute the criminals.
Once the cartels change their focus to other vices such as human trafficking, more deadly drugs, kidnapping, extortion, protection rackets, will the government start eyeing that revenue to pay off their still sky-rocketing debts? What will they legalize next? If the rationale is to stop the drug cartels from violence and trafficking by making it legal, then what will we have to legalize next to stop the cartels when they replace that lost revenue with another vice? How much can we legalize to stop the violence? How much are willing to legalize to stop the violence? Legalize human trafficking? It’s very hard to imagine anyone would vote for that. But the cartels, already engaged in this, will step it up to replace lost revenue. We will be making everything much worse by legalizing marijuana or any drug. It will solve nothing.
There will be those who are never convinced and want to legalize marijuana, for one reason alone. They like it and want to use it. Question for them: Would you want your doctor to perform surgery on you after he/she has used marijuana? If it’s legal, there will be no testing and no one will know before your surgery. If it’s legal, no one can stop doctors from operating under the influence.
Would you want to fly across the ocean (or anywhere for that matter) on a plane piloted by someone under the influence of marijuana? If it’s legal, some of us will unknowingly. Do you want your Congressmen and Senators voting on new laws restricting your freedom and taxing you more while they are under the influence of marijuana. Do you want your school children riding on a bus driven by someone under the influence of MJ? People wouldn’t want anyone under the influence of alcohol in the same situations. But it happens. Now we have the chance of doubling that with alcohol and MJ. It’s already come to light that some people will use both simultaneously or use one while the other is still in their system, increasing the effects. This is dangerous for all of us. Those who don’t use, will be driving on the same highways with those who do. It wasn’t a good idea to legalize alcohol. Too many precious lives have been lost due to drunk drivers. One life is too high a cost to pay.
What will be the effect upon children in homes where marijuana is being used routinely? Scientists say that non-users are affected by the smoke in the room. Children should never be subjected to this. For a list of negative effects of marijuana, visit http://alcoholism.about.com/od/pot/a/effects.-Lya.htm and http://www.justice.gov/dea/ongoing/marijuana.html . The effects are many and some are quite serious. No one’s health should be sold out for tax revenue because adults cannot control their spending of the public purse.
Once this weed is legalized, many people will begin growing it in their yards and young people will get it. Pot gardens will sprout up in neighborhoods everywhere. It will be impossible to keep it from children and teens. The opportunity for destruction is huge and unmanageable.
Speaking of the public purse: Obama’s new health care bill tries to address the cost of health care by discouraging unhealthy habits, predominately eating habits and smoking cigarettes. While seeking to remove candy and soda from vending machines nationwide, it would be fool-hearty to legalize the use of marijuana, a far more health-busting substance than Cokes and candy. No amount of fresh carrot sticks can heal the marijuana users. Our individual costs will sky-rocket (again) after marijuana use is legalized and the devastation blooms. Aren’t the people of America wiser than this?
The solution is to attack the spending addictions of our elected and appointed officials. Pass laws requiring balanced budgets set by the citizens, not the politicians. Get the government completely out of everything not enumerated to them in the Constitution. Repeal everything the government has no right to do. Return most government activities to the private sector – the people. Pass term limits, so that no politician has the time to build cushy nests for themselves and networks of “friends” to pass the money around. Put checks and balances in place and oversight to make them function properly.
Legalizing any drug, including marijuana, simply and most assuredly, feeds the addictions of the public and the politicians, thereby increasing both – the unintended consequence of a wrong-headed attempt to solve two problems with one “stoned”. (purposely misspelled).